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Apr 27, 2016

Former Pension Clerk Monica Escarpeta Freed of Embezzlement Charges

Monica Escarpeta

A theft that occurred at the Treasury Department in a two year period between 2007 and 2009 landed three women before the court. The case against pension clerk, Monica Escarpeta, along with her mother sixty- year old Yvonne Bevans and her friend, Rhea Pennell concluded today in the Supreme Court before Justice Troadio Gonzalez. Escarpeta was charged for embezzling two hundred and ninety-one thousand dollars, Bevans for handling stolen goods in the sum of twelve thousand four hundred and seventy-two dollars, and Pennell for handling stolen goods in the sum of one hundred and fifty-one thousand nine hundred and sixty seven dollars, all between the period of September first, 2007 and May thirty- first, 2009.  Today, the women were all set free for the lack of evidence. The first to be vindicated from the charges were Pennell and Bevans since there was insufficient evidence to prove the charge of handling stolen goods against them. As it relates to Escarpeta, there was also insufficient evidence to prove her case, so the judge ordered the jury to return a formal verdict of not guilty. The case started in mid-February and thirteen witnesses were called to the stand.  It was the prosecution’ allegations that Escarpeta, then a Pension Clerk, stole two hundred and ninety-one thousand dollars plus from the government but in his testimony, Auditor General Mark Jones testified that a total of three hundred and ninety-eight thousand dollars eight hundred and forty-three dollars  were in fact stolen from the pension funds. The office of the Auditor General managed to recover ninety-eight thousand two hundred and seventy-six dollars disbursed to various banks, but Escarpeta was only indicted and charged for embezzling two hundred and ninety-one thousand. Escarpeta was accused of coming up with the names of seven pensioners, who never worked with the government and paying out the large sum of money. But in the end, her attorney pointed out that the missing information was required to prove that she was responsible and when that could not be substantiated, the judge then freed the three women.

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